Chickenpox

Chickenpox (Varicella)

Chickenpox is caused by the highly contagious varicella zoster virus. It is spread by coughing and sneezing, and by direct contact with skin lesions. Chickenpox can lead to severe complications, including bacterial infection of the skin from the lesions, swelling of the brain, and pneumonia. Adults are at greater risk for severe complications from chickenpox than children. 

Once a person has had chickenpox, the virus can reactivate later in life to cause a painful condition called shingles, marked by a blistering rash. 

Learn more about chickenpox and the vaccine to prevent it.


Resources

Adolescent Vaccination Recommendation: Chickenpox

adolescentvaccination.org

Chickenpox - Also Known as Varicella

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), American Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP), and the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP): Fact Sheet

Chickenpox and the Vaccine (Shot) to Prevent It

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), American Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP), and the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP): Fact sheet for parents

Chickenpox Can Be Serious: Protect Yourself and Your Child

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC): Feature article

Shingles (Herpes Zoster)

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)

Shingles Information

National Institute of Neurological Disorders & Stroke (NINDS)

Varicela - Informacion para los padres

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), American Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP), and the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP): Spanish Fact Sheet

Varicella-Zoster Virus and HIV: Related Resources

University of California, San Francisco (UCSF)